US Navy ships look to establish Darwin military base, but China won’t be happy, warns expert

Saturday, February 14, 2015
By Paul Martin
Feb. 12, 2015

American warships could be stationed permanently in Darwin as part of the United States military’s strategic plan in the region, but an expert warns that will not sit well with China.

US chief of navy operations, Admiral Jonathan Greenert, said the US was considering having a permanent naval base in Australia.

Admiral Greenert recently visited Darwin to inspect facilities and infrastructure which could allow US warships to be based in the Top End.

At an address in Canberra this week Admiral Greenert said the US was “doing a study together with the Australian Defence Force to see what might be feasible for naval co-operation in and around Australia, which might include basing ships”.

Australian National University (ANU) Senior Fellow Peter Dean said such a move would be part of the US plan for Asia and would add to the existing US Marine Corps presence in Darwin.

“That started off small up there in Darwin as part of the US rebalance in the region. And that’s slowly increasing the number of US marines based up there in Darwin,” Dr Dean said.

“The plan that Admiral Greenert put out for that marine rotational force was to grow it to what he called a marines expeditionary unit.

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